I’ve never talked to anyone. I’m used to handling things on my own. Aren’t people who go to therapy weak?
Not at all. People who ask for help know when they need it and have the courage to reach out. Everyone needs help now and then. In our work together, I’ll help you explore and identify your strengths and how to implement them to reduce the influence of the problems you are facing.
What’s the difference between talking to you or my best friend or family?
The difference is between someone who can do something, and someone who has the training and experience to do that same thing professionally. A mental health professional can help you approach your situation in a new way– teach you new skills, gain different perspectives, listen to you without judgment or expectations, and help you listen to yourself. Furthermore, counseling is completely confidential. You won’t have to worry about others “knowing my business.” Lastly, if your situation provokes a great deal of negative emotion, and you’ve been confiding in a friend or family member, there is the risk that once you are feeling better you could start avoiding that person so you aren’t reminded of this difficult time in your life.

Will you talk to anyone about what I say?

No. What you talk about remains confidential and private and will not be disclosed without your consent UNLESS:

  1. HARM TO SELF OR OTHERS. Psychologists may disclose private information without consent in order to protect the patient or the public from serious harm — if, for example, a client discusses plans to attempt suicide or harm another person.
  2. There are mandatory reporting obligations under the Public Health Act in regards to COVID precautions: If a Psychologist has reason to believe that the patient, despite being notified of the need to take precautions (i.e., recent positive covid test), is acting in a manner that may be injurious to public health, or where there the patient’s actions may have already caused an increased risk of transmission, the mandatory reporting obligations in s. 1.1(1) will also be triggered.
  3. for the purpose of assisting AHS contact tracing
  4. ANY POTENTIAL RISK TO A CHILD (or other vulnerable person(s). Psychologists are required to report ongoing domestic violence, abuse or neglect of children, the elderly or people with disabilities.
  6. DUTY TO REPORT TO WCB IF psychological condition, in whole or in part, was caused by something that happened at work, and impacts their ability to work or work as usual. The requirement to report remains even if the client expressly refuses disclosure to the WCB.
Why shouldn’t I just take medication?
Medication can be effective but it alone cannot solve all issues. Sometimes medication is needed in conjunction with counseling. Our work together is designed to explore and unpack the problems you are experiencing and expand on your strengths that can help you accomplish your personal goals.
How does it work? What do I have to do in sessions?
Because each person has different issues and goals for counseling, it will be different depending on the individual. I tailor my therapeutic approach to your specific needs based on scientific support, my education and significant clinical experience.
How long will it take?
Unfortunately, this is not possible to say in a general FAQs page. Everyone’s circumstances are unique to them and the length of time counseling can take to allow you to accomplish your goals depends on your desire for personal development, your commitment, and the factors that are driving you to seek counseling in the first place.
I want to get the most out of therapy. What can I do to help?
I am so glad you are dedicated to getting the most out of your sessions. Your active participation and dedication will be crucial to your success.

FOR FIRST SESSION: To prepare for your first appointment there is nothing you HAVE to do. But taking some time to prepare and decide what is important to you will give both you and your therapist a solid starting point for you to get the most out of your therapy sessions.

THINK ABOUT WHAT IS IMPORTANT TO YOU” In the week before your appointment take some time to consider and/or write about (1) your background (eg., family situation, significant events, etc. (2) current concerns (3) what have you tried already (4) what prompted you to book a session now.

CLEAR SOME SPACE BEFORE AND AFTER YOUR APPOINTMENT (15 minutes is ideal): This time allows you to get the most out of each session by helping you feel ready for your appointment and giving you time to reflect after your session.

MANAGE YOUR EXPECTATIONS: Therapy isn’t a quick fix. You likely won’t leave the first session feeling ‘cured’ BUT it is likely you will fee a sense of relief and direction. After a few sessions you should have a new understanding of your concerns, have a game plan and have a sense of hope

How do I know you are the right therapist for me?

This is an excellent question. Choosing a therapist is a big decision. A brief initial phone consult is not required but is available if you would find it helpful. Please keep in mind this initial consultation is not a therapy session. It is more like an introduction to ease your mind and ensure you feel comfortable. Here are some questions others have found helpful:

  1. How do you approach helping people?
  2. Do you have experience working with people who have concerns like mine?
  3. Do you make treatment plans? If you do, will I be involved in mine?
  4. What can I expect during our sessions?
  5. What will you expect of me?
  6. Will I have homework?

If you feel frustrated after three or four sessions, it’s okay to find a new therapist to work with. Please consider chatting with me. In my experience conversations about what is not working can be incredibly transformational for you and I can often help direct you to a different treatment or therapist that may be more helpful.

Who pays for therapy?

Psychology Services are covered by many health insurance plans and/or through employer flex benefits. The amount covered/available depends on your current health insurance provider or employee benefit plan. It is possible for services to be covered in full or in part. Please contact your provider to verify how your plan compensates you for psychotherapy services.

I’d recommend asking these questions to your insurance provider to help determine your benefits:

  1. Does my health insurance plan include mental health benefits?
  2. Do I have a deductible? If so, what is it and have I met it yet?
  3. Does my plan limit how many sessions per calendar year I can have? If so, what is the limit?
  4. Do I need written approval from my primary care physician in order for services to be covered?

Do you bill for phone calls or letters?

Yes. Billing can also occur in 10 minute increments for services done outside the therapy hour such as phone calls, letters and the like calculated at one-fifth the hourly rate for each 10 minutes.

Report writing, telephone consultation, letters & form completion is billed at the rate of service being provided.

How are insurance and employee assistance program payments handled?

Direct billing is not available at this time.

How and when do you collect fees?

All services are paid for at the end of the session.

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